In this article on Samrat Ashoka facts or Emperor Ashoka facts, we will explore some of the little known facts about one of the most popular and well-known rulers of the Indian subcontinent. Here is what H.G. Wells – British Historian, has to say about Samrat Ashoka: “Amidst the tens of thousands of names of monarchs that crowd the columns of history … the name of Asoka shines, and shines almost alone, a star.” This statement alone proves that Samrat Ashoka was one of the greatest rulers in the history of this entire world and not just India. Let us now look at 30 interesting Samrat Ashoka facts and take a peek into his life. We hope you will like it.
Interesting Samrat Ashoka Facts: 1-10
1. Samrat Ashoka hailed from the ancient Maurya Dynasty of Indian Subcontinent. Historians consider him as one of THE MOST impeccable monarchs to have ever ruled a kingdom.
2. He was the third Mauryan Emperor. Born in 304 BCE, Ashoka became emperor in 273 BCE. However, his actual coronation took place in 269 BCE because of succession disputes that plagued the Mauryan Empire after the death of his father – King Bindusara.
3. He ruled over Indian Subcontinent till 232 BCE. He fought only one war as Emperor and after that he abolished warfare from his kingdom and led a peaceful life, preaching Buddhism. It was during his post-war rule that he received the title, Ashoka the Great.
4. However, prior to receiving this title, he was known as Chanda Ashoka (Cruel Ashoka). The only war he fought as the Emperor – the Kalinga War – is known as one of the bloodiest wars in ancient India.
5. Samrat Ashoka’s succession to throne also has a very interesting history. As we know, he was born in 304 BCE in Patuliputra. He was son of King Bindusara and his mother was Subhadrangi, who was better known as Dharma.
6. Dharma was a lowly girl by birth. She was the daughter of a Brahmin and not of a King. She was however, very beautiful and fair. According to legends, Dharma was supposed to become the mother of India’s Chakravartin Samrat.
7. It is because of this, the Brahmin actually brought his daughter to King Bindusara so that the two can get married. The King liked her beauty and took her in and kept her in women’s apartment along with his other queens.
8. Dharma’s beauty made the other queens of jealous and out of a wicked plot, they all made Dharma a barber girl. Dharma was put at King’s service where she did really well as a barber girl. Soon, Bindusara recognized Dharma as his wife and told her to ask for a wish that he could grant.
9. Dharma wished to become the mother of King Bindusara’s son. The King agreed and that’s how Ashoka was born. On birth, he was given the name Ashoka Vardhana Maurya.
10. Ashoka turned out to be a bright child from the beginning. He quickly excelled in weapons and studies alike and soon grew into a warrior general. The Mauryan army liked Ashoka and loved to serve under his command.